Gov. Beshear signs legislation to make affiliated government agencies more accountable for the use of public funds
FRANKFORT, Ky. (April 7, 2010) – Gov. Steve Beshear today signed into law two Senate bills that will ensure that public entities and affiliated organizations such as the Kentucky Association of Counties (KACo) and the Kentucky League of Cities (KLC) conduct their business operations under the light of public scrutiny.
“Kentuckians demand that any agency receiving taxpayer dollars be open and accountable for its use of public funds,” said Gov. Beshear. “I am very pleased that the General Assembly took the necessary steps to reassure every taxpayer that honest and ethical stewardship of tax dollars is a priority for this administration.”
Senate Bill 88 specifically sets conditions for open meetings and records and directs that a Web site be established to include a database containing information relating to the entities' expenditures. The legislation also sets forth auditing requirements for these organizations. SB 88 also requires the entities to adopt procurement, ethics, personnel and compensation, and complaints policies and requires training of local officials in related responsibilities.
Senate Bill 77 strengthens the Kentucky Department of Insurance’s oversight of liability self-insured groups and clarifies some areas that had been disputed, including placing these entities firmly under the statute prohibiting illegal inducements in any insurance transaction. This law allows for closer scrutiny of these groups, expands the establishment of a formal conflict of interest policy, provides for more transparency and offers greater protections for the policyholders and injured workers who rely on these funds.
“At the conclusion of our audits, we knew it was important to formalize our key recommendations through legislation,” said State Auditor Crit Luallen. “It is a positive step for taxpayers that lawmakers showed unanimous support for a measure that will ensure greater accountability and transparency for two organizations that provide important services to local governments. We thank those legislators who worked closely with this office to make the legislation a reality.”